Value for Money? – The You Beauty Advent Calendar Cost Breakdown

The entire contents of the You Beauty advent calendar 2013. Stand out products for me include Neom and Caudalie hand creams, balance me body wash and steam cream

The entire contents of the You Beauty advent calendar 2013. Stand out products for me include Neom and Caudalie hand creams, balance me body wash and steam cream

Before we get into it, this is a long post and probably nobody is interested/will actually read the whole thing. Due to the sheer amount of products, I haven’t included individual photos of everything. Okay, so just a round up post I suppose on everything received in the You Beauty advent calendar with costs of what it would cost to buy. The calendar cost around £55 with postage and You Beauty claim it is worth £240. We shall put this claim to the test, as being an engineer I have learned to prove everything myself. I won’t include any of the savings you can make in the total, just the physical cost of what I have next to me right now, in other words what came out the calendar. I will also include links to each daily post, as well as links to the websites that you can purchase products from. I have also included a quick one liner on my initial thoughts of whether I would purchase again.

Day 1 – Black Rose Cream Mask 10ml

Retails at £93 per 60ml tube direct from Sisley Paris. I actually really liked this and it definitely made my skin lovely and soft, but I don’t think it is worth the price tag as I have a similar product from the Bodyshop that is about a tenner for twice as much product.

Repurchase? No

Estimated Sample Cost £15.50

Day 2 – Caudalie Hand and Nail Cream Feuille de Cassis 30ml (Full Size) 

This retails at £6 for a 30ml tube direct from Caudalie. I loved the smell of this and would be interested to try the other two scents available. The hand cream has quickly made its way into my make-up bag for use everyday and it was very moisturising.

Repurchase? Yes

Estimated Sample Cost £6

Day 3 – ESPA Refining Skin Polish 7ml and Optimal Skin Pro Serum 4ml (plus a £15 gift card)

The Refining Skin Polish retails at £13 for a 15ml jar direct from ESPA. You can get a larger jar, but it is more expensive at £25.50 for 55ml. This is a great micro exfoliant and smelled very luxurious. I am not sure if I like it as much as the Philosophy Mircodelivery, so will make my mind up once I finish the little tube, but it did make my skin super soft. I’ve based the sample cost on the larger jar.

Repurchase? Possibly, undecided as of yet.

Estimated Sample Cost £3.25

The Optimal Skin Pro Serum retails at £48 for 30ml from ESPA, so is fairly pricey. I didn’t like the smell of this oil serum, but the texture was nice. It left my skin feeling moisturised, so I probably will use the whole bottle, but I won’t enjoy it much.

Repurchase? No

Estimated Sample Cost £6.40

Day 4 – Leighton Denny Expert Nail Colour in Vamp 4.6ml

A full size Leighton Denny nail colour costs £11 for 12ml from Leighton Denny direct. I got this colour in a set of Leighton polishes before and didn’t like it, so sadly I will be gifting this to someone. I can say that Leighton Denny applies well, dries quickly to a glossy finish and generally wears quite well.

Repurchase? Yes, in a different colour

Estimated Sample Cost £4.22

Day 5 – Balance Me Super Toning Body Wash 100ml

This little beauty retails from Balance Me for £10.25 for 260ml. This is a great shower gel, it smells nice, contains no nasties and leaves my skin nice and clean without drying it out.

Repurchase? Yes, once I have depleted my massive stash

Estimated Sample Cost £3.94

Day 6 – Perricone MD No Foundation Foundation 7.5ml

You can buy this foundation for £47 for a 30ml bottle from Perricone. I don’t like this foundation, I think maybe I am in the wrong age bracket. I wasn’t even sure what this was meant to be? A BB cream? A foundation? Something else? I have passed this onto my auntie, so maybe she will get on better with it than me. It is also a bit expensive for a foundation.

Repurchase? No.

Estimated Sample Cost £11.75

Day 7 – The Vintage Cosmetics Company Limited Edition Christmas Tweezers (Full Size)

The Vintage Cosmetic Company sell these tweezers and other designs for £8. Not much to say about these, except they are nice and sharp and catch the hairs well. They are as good as Tweezerman, but I still think I prefer my Tweezerman as they have slightly more spring if that makes sense?

Repurchase? No, I don’t need more Tweezers. I will however buy more things from this company in future.

Estimated Sample Cost £8

Day 8 – Aromatherapy Associates Inner Strength Bath and Shower Oil 7.5ml

Aromatherapy Associates sell this gorgeous oil for £39 for 55ml, which is quite pricey. I did rally like this oil, it wasn’t that horrible greasy way that some can be and smelled gorgeous. A few drops filled my bathroom with the aromatic scent, it certainly did relax me, I am not sure about giving me strength etc.

Repurchase? Yes, but most likely more miniatures, not full size bottles.

Estimated Sample Cost £5.32

Day 9 – Trilogy Rosapene Night Cream 25ml

A 60ml tub of this cream will set you back £28.50 from Trilogy. This smells lovely, is very rich and moisturising and is certified natural. It contains lots of oils and that is probably why it left my skin nice and soft.

Repurchase? Maybe, I like my current night cream and it is cheaper.

Estimated Sample Cost £11.88

Day 10 – Inika Mineral Eyeshadow in Gun Metal 1.2g (Full Size)

This unusual eyeshadow is available from Inika for £14.50 for 1.2g. Inika is certified organic and Vegan and the eyeshadow is surprisingly good quality. It is long lasting and applies well. This isn’t my favourite colour, but I may wear it on special occasions again.

Repurchase? Yes, I will try other products

Estimated Sample Cost £14.50

Day 11 – SteamCream 75ml (Full Size)

Other tin designs are available to purchase from Steam Cream for £12.95 each. I’ve had a tin of this before and I love it. It is a great all purpose moisturiser and I especially love the vast range of tin designs available. I may start a collection. This sinks in well and is non-greasy.

Repurchase? Yes

Estimated Sample Cost £12.95

Day 12 – Stila Lip Glaze in Kaleidoscope 1.5ml

Stila sell these glosses at £15 for a 2.4ml size. This is a suit all colour and my mum loves it, but I can’t bring myself to like it as Stila test on animals. It is a nice colour, but I can’t help but think of the poor little animals.

Repurchase? No. Poor animals

Estimated Sample Cost £9.38

Day 13 – Dermalogica Ultra Calming Mist 4ml, cleanser 7ml, serum concentrate 4ml, eye serum sachet and relief masque sachet

So obviously I can’t cost the two sachets, which I haven’t used yet as I am saving them for travel, but I will give costs for the other three. A 250ml bottle of the cleanser retails for £26.30 from Dermalogica. The cleanser was nice, but nothing special. It didn’t leave my skin tight or dry and seemed to remove all my make-up.

Repurchase? No, I think there is better for the money

Estimated Sample Cost £0.74

The Ultra Calming mist is available from Dermalogica for £27.60 for 177ml. This was nice and cooling, but a little oily so not recommended after make up. I think this would be lovely on a hot day after a swim in the pool on holiday, so I am putting it away in case I get on holiday next year. Unlikely. I don’t think it does much for the skin though.

Repurchase? Yes, if it wasn’t so expensive

Estimated Sample Cost £0.62

The Ultra Calmins Serum Concentrate can be purchased from Dermalogica for £51.30 for 50ml. I liked the feel of this on my skin, it glided on smoothly. It was a little watery and runny for my liking, but smelled great.

Repurchase? No, again too expensive and not any better than my current serum

Estimated Sample Cost £4.10

Day 14 – Green People Anti Age Eyeliner in City Grey (Full Size)

This is a new product from Green people and can be purchased for £10.95 direct from Green People. I am passing this onto my Aunt, but my Mum has given me her thoughts on the one from her calendar. Apparently this is very soft , applies well and will last for around 8 hours (not as long as her gel eyeliner, but still good).

Repurchase? Yes, she would buy it again

Estimated Sample Cost £10.95

Day 15 – Bio Effect EGF Serum 2.5ml

If you are feeling like you need to splash the cash, you can purchase a full size 15ml bottle of this direct from BioEffect for £125. This is vey expensive, which worried me that I would end up loving it. I haven’t noticed any difference in pigmentation of my dark circles, but I do plan on using the whole bottle. It applies well, feeling very silky on my skin and you do only need a little bit so it will last for ages.

Repurchase? No, far too expensive

Estimated Sample cost £20.83

Day 16 – Dr Organic Dead Sea Mineral Eye Rollerball 15ml (Full Size)

So upon visiting the Dr Organic website, it redirects you to Holland and Barrett, where you can pick up this 15ml tube for £8.99. This has a massive accolade of awards from the likes of Cosmopolitan, Beauty Bible and Pure Beauty. The rollerball is extremely cooling on the eye area and does reduce puffiness, so I like it alone for that. Even if the ingredients are a little weird, I do like this. Yeast or no yeast, this is going to get used and I may even check out some other products from this brand as it is pretty extensive and purse friendly.

Repurchase? Yes

Estimated Sample Cost £8.99

Day 17 – DHC Deep Cleansing Oil Mini 30ml (Full Size)

DHC are a Japanese brand and if you fancy trying out the Deep Cleansing Oil you can find it in miniature size for £4.50. Well they say fight oil with oil right? So I gave this a try and was’t keen. I mean slathering oil on your face feels just wrong. My mum however loved this and I would say her skin is probably a lot drier than mine, so maybe those with dry skins will love this? It wasn’t bad, and does smell great, just wasn’t for me unfortunately.

Repurchase? No

Estimated Sample Cost £4.50

Day 18 – Dr Lipp Original Nipple Balm for Lips 15ml (Full Size)

Once you get past the initial giggle at the name, you can find this from the Beauty Bay for £11.50 for the 15ml tube. This is really thick and I didn’t like it for lips. It did help take the itch out of the dermatitis on my hand and I think it will make a decent cuticle balm.

Repurchase? Yes

Estimated Sample Cost £11.50

Day 19 – Model Co Mascara (Full Size)

If you can overlook the poor packaging of this, you can purchase it from Model Co for £10. I didn’t like this. The packaging looks and feels cheap and the formula is quite thick. I have only tried it once and vowed to never use it again, but in the name of blogging I will try again and update you if I like it.

Repurchase? No

Estimated Sample Cost £10

Day 20 – Q Awe Body Spray 100ml (Full Size)

Q body sprays retail for £2.29 per 100ml from Boots. I am not a massive body spray fan and this wasn’t my favourite smell ever. I will use this, it will probably live in my gym bag, which never sees the light of day haha. I imagine someone who uses bodysprays regularly might quite like this, but I always find bodysprays smell quite gassy.

Repurchase? No

Estimated Sample Cost £2.29

Day 21 – Alterna Bamboo Kendi Oil Dry Oil Mist 30ml

If you fancy picking this up, you can find a 125ml bottle on the Beauty Bay for £19.75. (EDIT currently in the sale for £15.60). This is growing on me, I can’t quite seem to get the right quantity though. I either see no effect of use too much and it weighs my hair down and makes it oily. I shall persevere.

Repurchase? Possibly

Estimated Sample Cost £4.75

Day 22 – Neom Luxury Organics Moroccan Blush Rose Hand Cream 50ml

I was surprised that this only costs £20 for a 75ml tube from Neom. Yes, that is expensive, but I was judging purely on the cost of the candles. This is a really lovely, non-greasy cream, which smells of roses. It is not the traditional old lady rose smell, but a very contemporary smell. I like how moisturising this is and it is a welcome addition to my stash.

Repurchase? Possibly for a treat

Estimated Sample Cost £15.33

Day 23 –  Weleda Skin Food 10ml

If you fancy this super hydrating cream, you can purchase a 30ml tube for £5.95 from Weleda. This is really thick and moisturising and I think it will be great for my eczema. It doesn’t really smell of much to me and I wasn’t too taken with it at first, but it is growing on me.

Repurchase? Possibly

Estimated Sample Cost £1.98

Day 24 – Roques ONeil Himalayan Detox Salts 100g (Full Size) 

If you fancy some bath salts from Roques ONeil, these will set you back £10 for 100g. I haven’t used these yet, purely because I haven’t had the time. These do smell really quite lovely and I think it is the lavender and geranium which is most prominent. I could smell these from day 1 in my calendar and I am pretty excited to use them. Supposedly the pouch will do 2-3 baths, but in my minute eco bath I reckon I will get 6-8 baths.

Repurchase? Maybe

Estimated Sample Cost £10

So in the calendar we got a massive 11 full size products, a £15 gift card, loads of great trial sizes and discounts. I am really chuffed with the calendar and hope they do one next year, as I would definitely repurchase. Now…..the moment you have all been waiting for.

I somehow managed to stuff most of this into my little Benefit make-up bag.

I somehow managed to stuff most of this into my little Benefit make-up bag.

Total Estimated Sample Cost £219.67 (not including the £15 gift card)

Obviously these are only my estimates based on full price, but this does come pretty close to the quoted £240.

Did you have an advent calendar this year and would you consider this one? Have you tried any of these products and what did you think?



You Beauty Advent Calendar Day 24


Sorry for the really bad quality photo, but to be honest your not missing much! It’s a bag of pink tinged salts, but oh my gosh! It is these beauties which have been making my calendar smell terrific. It’s just a lovely herbal/aromatherapy scent. Therapie Roques O’Neil are a brand I had never heard of, but I am excited to try these salts out. Apparently the 100g bag is enough for 2-3 baths, which in my tiny eco friendly bath tub is probably about 8 baths. I realised just how small it was when I visited home and my boyfriends parents and had a shower and to me, it was like standing in the grand canyon! Anyway, these little babies smell delicious and will be getting a full review for sure when I try them out. I can’t wait! Apparently it contains a blend of essential oils to detoxify. Mmmm.

I hope you enjoyed my little snippet posts every day and have  lovely Christmas.

Have you tried any bath salts before and have you heard of this brand?

You Beauty Advent Calendar Day 23


So I am almost caught up with the advent calendar mini posts and I have realised I will quite miss doing them 😦 I did notice the Ciate mini mani month is reduced in some places, so maybe I will buy that as it looks like a decent colour selection. No, you are a polish hoarder and don’t need it. Ah how my sensible self gets me sometimes. Okay, so today (or should I say yesterday) was another hand cream. Yeah hand creams are great, but three in one advent calendar? Well technically its a cream you can use all over, but the tube is so blinking small at 10ml I personally think it’s best to use it on hands as I would probably get half of my legs done and run out.

Weleda, Weleda, Weleda. Not a brand I am familiar with, but I love the name. I also like the green box, but not the metal tube. I loathe metal tubes. They are such a royal pain in the bum to get the last drops out of. Anyway, the cream. Well it is thick and doesn’t really smell of much. It is aimed at dry skin, which I have plenty of and contains beeswax and sunflower oil among others. It is very thick and not my favourite, but maybe it will grow on me? After all, I can’t really judge after one use. This retails for £5.95 for 30ml, making this tiny tube worth around £2.

Have you tried Weleda? Would you be interested in a broken down costing of the advent calendar? I know they claim it is worth £240, but would people like that proved?

Check out the list of discount codes here. (I think I forgot to put the Neom one in the post)

You Beauty Advent Calendar Day 22


I had heard of Neom, but only in the world of candles, so was pleasantly surprised to find this hand cream behind door number 22. It looks really luxurious in the packing, with the gold lettering and of course it is organic. I have never had anything from Neom before, as it is quite pricey but I know many other bloggers rave about the candles, so hopefully this hand cream live up to the candle hype. I get really dry hands all year round and winter does them no favours, so it is great to add this to my stash. The scent is Moroccan Blush Rose, which doesn’t smell like a typical Rose offering and is not too over powering. Ingredients include lots of lovely things like Avacado and Argan oil, which should make this really moisturising. After scouring the Neom website, a 75ml tube retails at £20, which is pretty pricey and means this 50ml tube is worth about £14. You Beauty have really pulled it out the bag with this one, another beautiful luxury product.

I tried this out twice and both times, it has soaked into the skin quickly, so thumbs up so far.  I love scheduling posts, definitely will try to get more in depth reviews scheduled for over the festive period. I will probably do a full review of this once I have finished it, but for now MERRY CHRISTMAS!!

Have you tried anything from Neom? What are your Christmas plans?

You Beauty Advent Calendar Day 21


Ah brilliant. Something to tame my mop. Being a GHD obsessee (I own two pairs) and a wash-aholic (everyday), my hair is left looking a bit frazzled and with split ends sticking up everywhere. I’ve heard of Alterna before, but only due to my BBB Box. Instantly I was happy that the front of the bottle advertises no parabens or sulphates. Further investigation and I see the oil contains eco-certified bamboo, whatever that means. This promised t reverse the effects of heat and UV damage and is perfect for fine to medium hair. I’m sold. So this contains amongst others, sunflower oil, grape oil, olive oil and jojoba oil and as such is pretty oily in consistency. Ah dear, one of those products. Too little and no effect. Too much and chip pan hair. I sprayed a little of this on the palm of my hand and rubbed in onto my hair. It did add some shine and smooth a little, so I was impressed. I was disappointed that there was no smell to this, well there was, but it was very faint. I also feel like I need to experiment with the amount of this I use to get the best results but I am impressed so far. So far I have only used on damp hair, but you can use on dry hair, so that is an entire new kettle of fish for me. This is definitely a product I will be trialling over the festive period when I don’t need to be up at the crack of dawn for work. I’ve found this on FeelUnique for £20.50 for 125ml, making this little bottle worth around £4.20. Definitely happy with this little beauty.

Have you tried anything from Alterna? How do you combat frizz and split ends?